A Six-Year Retrospective
The North Carolina Tobacco Trust Fund Commission is pleased to present this Six-Year Retrospective featuring 33 successful projects funded by the commission from 2001 to 2007.We believe this publication will help North Carolinians - including elected representatives, community leaders and the general public - more fully understand the role the Tobacco Trust Fund Commission is playing to secure a better future for those citizens adversely affected by the decline of tobacco-related income and employment.
In November of 1998, the attorneys general of 46 states signed an agreement with four of the nation's largest cigarette manufacturers. This settlement is referred to as the Master Settlement Agreement (MSA). The MSA commits these tobacco manufacturers to pay approximately $206 billion to the 46 states over the first 25 years of the agreement. Of that, North Carolina’s share is estimated to be approximately $4.6 billion after 25 years. Money from the MSA is sometimes called “Phase I” money.
The NC General Assembly created three different programs to distribute the State's Phase I funds. The Golden LEAF Foundation, a non-profit corporation, receives 50% of the Phase I funds and makes grants for economic development in tobacco dependent communities. The Health and Wellness Trust Fund, a State agency receives, 25% of the Phase I funds and makes grants for health-related programs. The remaining 25% is allocated to the Tobacco Trust Fund Commission (TTFC.)
However, since its inception, the TTFC has had nearly $380 million of the MSA payment diverted to other areas within the state budget. Only $83 million has been expended towards actual grant projects which fulfill the statutory purpose of the TTFC.
The Tobacco Trust Fund Commission:
The Tobacco Trust Fund Commission (“the Commission”) was created to assist tobacco farmers, tobacco quota holders, persons engaged in tobacco-related businesses, individuals displaced from tobacco-related employment, and tobacco product component businesses in the State due to the adverse effects of the MSA. The Commission can disburse funds through compensatory programs and qualified agricultural programs.
The Governor, Speaker of the House and the President Pro Tem of the Senate appoint the eighteen Commission members. The Tobacco Trust Fund is managed financially by the State Treasurer, and the Commission is administratively housed in the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. The Commission is independent, and reports annually to the NC Legislative Commission on Governmental Operations regarding its programs. The Commission met for the first time February 15, 2001.
The following links are provided as a convenience, and the inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement by the North Carolina Tobacco Trust Fund.